In the depths of the Quabbin Reservoir in Worcester County, Massachusetts lie the submerged remains of four towns, including Dana, also known as Renfrew or Storesville.
These towns were flooded in 1939 to make way for the reservoir, which now spans over 25,000 acres and provides drinking water to millions of people.
The displaced residents in the process of constructing the reservoir complained of being bullied out of their homes, and now their homes and bodies rest below the waterline, serving as a haunting reminder of the past.
Despite the displacement of their residents, remnants of these lost towns can still be found above the water, providing a glimpse into their former existence.
Many believe that the spirits of the displaced residents still linger, making these drowned towns a haunting reminder of the past.
This article explores the history of these lost towns, the construction of the Quabbin Reservoir project, and the remains that can still be seen above water, shedding light on the haunting memories that continue to be associated with the submerged towns.
- In 1939, four towns in Worcester County, Massachusetts were flooded to make way for the Quabbin Reservoir, resulting in the displacement of their residents who complained of being bullied out of their homes.
- Remnants of the lost towns can still be found above the waterline, and many believe that the spirits of the displaced residents still linger, with ghost sightings and unexplained phenomena becoming part of the local folklore.
- The lost towns and their memories continue to haunt the area, providing opportunities for exploration and historical reflection.
- The Quabbin Reservoir now spans over 25,000 acres and provides drinking water to millions of people, highlighting the enduring legacy of the forgotten communities that once called the valley home.
Dana: Before the Flood
The town of Dana, also known as Renfrew and Storesville, was once a small community located in Worcester County, Massachusetts. Life in Dana was typical of the early 20th century rural America, with a population of around 600 people who lived in close proximity to one another. The town had a few small businesses, including a general store, a post office, and a school. The residents were mostly farmers, and the town had a strong sense of community.
However, in the late 1930s, the government decided to build the Quabbin Reservoir, providing drinking water to Boston and other nearby cities. The reservoir required flooding of the Swift River Valley, which meant that four towns, including Dana, had to be sacrificed. Community resistance was strong, but the government used eminent domain to take over the land. Residents were bullied out of their homes and their houses were crushed. Bodies were removed from cemeteries, and the town was left empty.
Despite this, many interesting remains of the town still exist above the water line, including the Dana Common and the clubhouse to the old golf course in either Greenwich or Prescott, which are believed to be haunted.
The Quabbin Reservoir Project
Constructed in the late 1930s, the Quabbin Reservoir Project resulted in the submersion of four Worcester County, Massachusetts communities. The flooding of the valley began in mid-August 1939 and residents of the four towns, Dana, Enfield, Greenwich, and Prescott, were forced to leave their homes. Many complained that they were bullied out of their homes and houses were crushed. Bodies were removed from cemeteries and the area was completely flooded.
The Quabbin Reservoir Project had a significant environmental impact on the area. The valley was flooded to create a reservoir to supply water to Boston and its surrounding towns. To accomplish this, a half-mile long dam was constructed on the Swift River in Belchertown, MA, and one of the longest tunnels in the world was built to carry the water a hundred miles to the east. The project also displaced residents of the four towns, who were forced to leave their homes and relocate elsewhere.
Remains Above Water
Interesting remains of the four flooded towns can still be found above the water line, providing opportunities for exploration and historical reflection.
Dana Common, for instance, is a fascinating place to visit, surrounded by walls, sidewalks, and cellar holes that serve as tangible reminders of a town that once thrived in the Quabbin Valley. This site is a popular destination for hikers and history buffs who appreciate learning more about the lost towns and the people who once lived there.
Additionally, the intact clubhouse of the old golf course in either Greenwich or Prescott is another intriguing spot that visitors can explore. These ruins are an excellent way to experience and understand the Quabbin Reservoir Project and its devastating impact on the communities that were forced to abandon their homes.
Despite the physical remains of the lost towns, their memories continue to haunt the area. Many people claim to have witnessed ghost sightings in the Quabbin Valley, and the stories of restless spirits and unexplained phenomena have become part of the local folklore.
These tales add another layer of intrigue and mystery to the already fascinating history of the lost towns. While there is no scientific evidence to support these claims, they offer a unique perspective on the emotional impact of the Quabbin Reservoir Project and the enduring legacy of the forgotten communities that once called the valley home.
Frequently Asked Questions
What was the population of Dana before it was flooded?
The population density of Dana before it was flooded is not specified in the given information. However, the environmental impact of the flooding resulted in the loss of four towns and forced residents to abandon their homes, with buildings torn down and bodies removed from cemeteries.
Were there any notable historical events or landmarks in Dana before it was flooded?
Dana had notable historical significance as a hub for agriculture and industry in Worcester County. The town boasted a variety of landmarks, including a mill, schoolhouse, and church, which had a significant cultural impact on the community before it was flooded.
How did the residents of Dana feel about being forced to leave their homes?
Deeply distraught, Dana residents were displaced from their homes to make way for the Quabbin Reservoir. Many felt bullied by officials and mourned the loss of their community, leading to ongoing emotional trauma.
What was the process for removing bodies from cemeteries before the flooding?
Grave relocation was a necessary process in the community displacement caused by the Quabbin Reservoir construction. The government was responsible for overseeing the removal of bodies from cemeteries to allow for the environmental impact of the flooding.
Are there any efforts being made to preserve or restore any of the remaining buildings or structures in the flooded towns?
Efforts towards preservation/restoration of remaining structures in the flooded towns have been limited. Lack of funding and community support hinder restoration. However, some structures like Dana Common and the clubhouse remain accessible.